If you have a shared website hosting account and you set up an e-mail address, you may take the option to send and receive messages for granted, but in fact, this isn't always the case. Sending e-mail messages isn't necessarily part of the web hosting plans that providers will offer you and an SMTP service is required to be capable to do that. The acronym signifies Simple Mail Transfer Protocol and this is the piece of software that enables you to send e-mails. If you work with an email application, it connects to the SMTP server. The latter then searches the DNS data of the domain, that is a part of the receiving address to find out which mail server handles its emails. After system data is exchanged, your SMTP server provides the message to the remote IMAP or POP server and then the e-mail is finally delivered in the corresponding mailbox. An SMTP server is required if you work with some kind of contact page form as well, so in case you work with a cost-free hosting package, as an example, it's probable that you won't have the ability to make use of such a form as most no charge hosting service providers do not allow outgoing e-mails.